SO…THIS IS LOVE: Creative Video from Concept to Completion

Trevor Miller

So this is Love : Creative video from concept to completion

“So this is Love?” was a concept for our latest sermon series on marriage at Mt. Horeb Church. As a church staff we believe that one of the greatest needs in the Church today is to equip marriages, enrich marriages and renew marriages. The phrase that ignited this sermon series idea was, “Falling in love is easy, but staying in love is messy”. From this we began to develop our approach.

The goal was to show a trailer for the series during our Christmas Eve services, when the attendance would be at its peak and we would have the greatest opportunity for impact. It would be a series that was unapologetically focused on the marriages within our church. We wanted our creative video to pack as much punch as possible to garner interest and excitement.

First thing’s first.

What did we want to say? We wanted couples who had a good marriage already to be intrigued by the way we approach the topic. We were afraid we would run the risk of them being disinterested. We wanted couples who were struggling to feel the weight of their situation. We wanted to communicate to the audience that there is beauty in marriage that too often is juxtaposed to mess. There is a stark contrast and we wanted people to feel that.

Suggested Tweet: "Check out the creative process of @mthorebumc latest sermon bumper from concept to execution. @trevoralvin"

The concept.

The concept was simple and was birth through “creative consumption”. By simply watching hours of videos online concerning all things wedding and marriage, we stumbled upon a breakfast disaster video that sparked our interest. The video showed a beautiful breakfast table setting that suddenly exploded into an udder disaster. From this one video we decided to recreate a beautiful wedding reception, complete with cake, champagne, finger foods and place settings. When the congregation saw this set up we wanted them to connect to the memory of their own weddings or future weddings. During this part of the video we wanted to capitalize on those feelings by having the words, “Falling in love is easy”, come across the screen. At just the right time the table also would explode, sending food and drink in all directions. Here we would display the words, “Staying in love is messy”. This was also to capitalize on the emotions produced by the mess.

The approach.

We purchased all the necessary food and items needed for the reception from someone who is a food representative in our church. This cut costs and helped get the right look. We used a wedding cake, chicken salad sandwiches, macaroons, cheese tray, fresh vegetables and fruit, meatballs, place settings, table clothes and a nice looking cake topper. Total cost to this project before editing was around $175.00. The price will vary based on your choices for the reception set up.


We filmed the shoot with a Canon 5D (shooting in 60 fps), a GoPro HERO5 Black (shooting in 240 fps) and a DJI Osmo+ (shooting in 120 fps). Ideally we would have had a camera that could capture at an even higher frames per second, but we worked with what we had.


We set up two separate scenes for the shoot. One was the nice reception setting that was stationary and well lit. We also set up a 6 foot lightweight folding table. We chose this table because it seemed to respond the best to being dropped. The light weight nature caused it to expel a lot of energy and get lift for the items on the table. This too was lit by two soft box lights to ensure good quality film and few shadows.

Suggested Tweet: "Behind the scenes of our latest marriage series @mthorebumc - So...This is Love. @trevoralvin "

The execution.

To get the explosion look we simply lifted the table on both sides carefully to nearly chin leave and quickly slammed the table down onto the laminate floor. We captured the moment from multiple angles two times. We had to clean up our mess between takes. After this, it was all in the editing process to make it seem that the table’s beautiful setting exploded out of nowhere and created a huge mess. We had around 6 people involved from the set up to the actual filming and editing.

The video.

Here is the finished video that we put together. We produced a trailer version and a sermon bumper version to air each weekend of the series.

The response.

After showing this trailer for our new series we saw great interested. The video was shared on Facebook and watched over and over. In fact, we saw an attendance jump of nearly 10% from when we showed the video to the beginning of the sermon series. In the end, the desire is life change in the hearts of people.

Sometimes we have to work extra hard to create a concept that will speak volumes and a process that will complement the intention.

Suggested Tweet: "Work to create a concept that speaks volumes & a process that complements the intention. @trevoralvin"

About Trevor Miller

Pastor of Men’s/Young Adult Ministries
Mt. Horeb United Methodist Church | Lexington, SC

Trevor Miller is a graduate of Columbia International University where he earned his degrees in youth ministry, outdoor leadership and Bible. He has a background working in student ministry and currently serves as the Pastor of Men’s and Young Adult Ministries for Mt. Horeb United Methodist Church in Lexington, SC. Trevor has a passion for creatively communicating the transforming power of the gospel. He and his wife, Jenna, currently reside in Lexington with their 2 boys, Eli and Owen.

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